Business Today

It'll soon be raining cars

In the next six-to-nine months, several new cars are going to be launched. We take a look at some of them.

By Kushan Mitra | Print Edition: Nov 18, 2007

In the next six-to-nine months, several new cars are going to be launched. We take a look at some of them.

HyundaiHyundai 10
This car is a replacement for the Hyundai Atos (Santro) in most markets, but it remains to be seen if Hyundai will produce it alongside the Santro in India. However, recent price cuts on the Santro have led to speculation that it will finally cease production (it was launched in 1998). While Hyundai has been super-secretive about this car, which will be launched in India first, as Hyundai’s Chennai plant will become a production hub for this vehicle, it will share most of its elements with the Kia Piconto (pictured). The first advertising, featuring Shah Rukh Khan with the tag-line ‘Catch the i’, has reportedly already been shot.
LAUNCH: November 2007

Chevrolet Captiva
ChevroletThe Chevrolet Forrester was a fantastic car, but nobody seemed to want one. So, General Motors is looking to re-enter the sports utility vehicle (SUV) market with the Chevrolet Captiva, which will feature a 2-litre diesel engine option (the same engine as on the Optra Diesel), and will have an “enticing” price-point, which should dissuade people from buying the Honda CR-V, which has a petrol engine. The Captiva will be a fullyimported car, but will it manage to set the roads alight?
LAUNCH: January 2008
EXPECTED PRICE: Rs 16-19 lakh

Tata’s 1-lakh car
It does not have a name, and we don’t know what it looks like. All we do know is that Ratan Tata has staked Tata Motors’ reputation with this car. Expect the prototype car to be unveiled at the Auto Expo in New Delhi in January 2008 and go on sale in late-2008 or early-2009.
UNVEILING: January 2008

TataTata Indica (new)
The original Tata car, the Indica is being given a facelift, and come January we will get to see it. The new Indica is expected to feature a common-rail Dicor engine and have updated petrol engines in the XETA range.
LAUNCH: January 2008

 Skoda Fabia
SkodaWell, after four years of dillydallying, Skoda is finally launching the Fabia in India. The Czech car-maker has had to struggle to keep prices under check, and while the Fabia in India may not feature all the creature comforts of the European version, it will give cars in the highly competitive C-segment a tough time. Expected to be launched with a choice of diesel and petrol engines, the car will be a “premium hatch” and will be in the price range of the Ford Fusion.
LAUNCH: January 2008

Fiat Grande Punto
Another Auto Expo launch? Well, it isn’t clear as yet, but this new Fiat will be launched soon. It will be manufactured by the Fiat-Tata joint-venture and might signal Fiat’s resurgence in India (along with the bigger Linea). The Italian carmaker has clawed back from the brink in Europe, though its Indian line-up remains positively stale despite the Palio’s face-lift; the Grande Punto is expected to change that. However, the carmaker will have to work doubletime in the premium hatch-back market dominated by the Maruti-Suzuki Swift.
LAUNCH: January 2008

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